Entrepreneur and navy wife Cynthia Cummings stands outside the Department of National Defense property on Rosebank Road in Colwood

Business to offer bus service between Colwood and CFB Esquimalt

A Colwood entrepreneur is launching a private bus service to pick up where the cancellation of the military Blue Boat has left off.

A Colwood entrepreneur is launching a private bus service to pick up where the impending cancellation of the military Blue Boat has left off.

The “Blue Bus” shuttle service will transport people between the Colwood location of the Military Family Resource Centre on Rosebank Road, and the CFB Esquimalt front gates starting May 1.

Buses are scheduled to leave near the military resource centre Monday to Friday for three morning runs before 7 a.m. Return trips will leave from near CFB Esquimalt at 4:15 and 4:45 p.m.

Blue Bus developer Cynthia Cummings has a husband and son in the navy who use the Blue Boat daily.

With the upcoming cancellation of the service at the end of April, she said it only seemed logical that somebody provide an alternative.

“I’m doing this because we are a military family,” said Cummings, who lives in Belmont Park. “I’m doing it for the military, just to ensure that our military community can continually, comfortably go to work.”

Cummings said she thinks of herself as a logistical coordinator putting together a needed service. She isn’t expecting to make a profit and is trying to keep the fare price as low as possible.

Ultimately, demand will drive service levels, and if it turns out that there is no demand, Cummings said her investment is minimal enough that she can shut the business down without much of a loss.

“If I last a month, or six months, I can stop at any time,” said Cummings. “I just figured let’s just do it. Let’s see what happens.”

She is selling the Blue Bus service as convenient, reliable, specific to the needs of the military personnel and a solution to get more cars off the “Colwood crawl.”

The project has fallen together quickly for Cummings, who is working with Wilson’s Transportation in Victoria to organize buses and drivers. She has already heard plenty of interest from military families and expects the service to be well used.

“I think it’s a great idea,” said her husband, Warrant Officer Wayne Cummings.

“I think the military is very keen on something like this or anything, because they don’t have a viable option, they don’t have a solution. This alleviates that issue.”

Cynthia Cummings said the Blue Bus service — blue in name only, unlike the outgoing Blue Boats — will have the capacity to transport about 320 people in the morning. Between 300 and 500 people use the Blue Boat daily.

With two buses per run, and three runs each weekday morning, and two back in the afternoon, Cummings said her company can fill the gap.

Parking for the service will be available for military personnel just inside the gates of the Department of National Defense property at the end of Rosebank Road.

CFB Esquimalt spokesperson Lt. Michael McWhinnie confirmed military members can use that parking for the Blue Bus. The area is being offered to for personnel who are carpooling and the bus service initiative fits that mandate.

“While CFB Esquimalt is discussing a number of transportation options with other parties, we are pleased to see a private initiative taken that may help to relieve the traffic congestion in the local area,” McWhinnie said.

Alternative parking will be available in the lower parking bowl of the West Shore Parks and Recreation property, near Bear Mountain arena.

The Blue Bus will swing up through that parking lot to pick up commuters. After that the buses will go directly to CFB Esquimalt, with no other stops.

“I think word will travel very quickly, which is great. That’s what we need,” Cummings said. “I think (the Blue Bus) just gives you a good option.”

A business licence from the City of Colwood is in the works and all transportation licensing comes through Wilson’s Transportation.

The Department of National Defense is not involved but has been informed of the intent of the business. The service will be available to all military personnel, families, civilian workers or any members of the public.

Riders will be able to purchase either a monthly pass at $60, a biweekly pass at $35 or a weekly pass at $20, plus HST.

For more information visit www.bluebusshuttle.com.

news@goldstreamgazette.com

 

 

 

Just Posted

Head of Victoria homebuilders says provincial budget won’t solve housing crisis

Casey Edge of Victoria Residential Builders Association dismisses more modular housing as a band-aid

Oak Bay one step closer to deer immunocontraceptive test

Up to 80 deer could be given ‘birth control’ vaccine in the fall

Parents still seek clarity for future of Victor School

Motion avoided to remove special needs Victor School from boundary review proposal

Two missing Victoria children found safe

VicPD responded to two separate missing children calls Tuesday

Study moves Oak Bay closer to contraceptive control for problem deer

The report says between 78 and 128 black tail deer live in the affluent beach-side community

VIDEO: Massive elk herd runs across Washington State highway

Elk have been making an appearance in the Pacific Northwest

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of Feb. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

$10-a-day child care not in 2019 budget, but advocate not irked

Sharon Gregson with the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of B.C. says NDP on track to deliver promise

Winter storm freezes U.S., halts air travel

Storm dumps snow or heavy rain, snarls travel in much of U.S.

Gwyneth Paltrow: Skier sued me to exploit my fame, wealth

The incident happened in Deer Valley Resort in Park City, Utah

B.C. Seniors Advocate questions labour shortage in care homes

Are there really no workers, or are care aide wages too low?

B.C. business groups worry about looming economic decline in wake of NDP budget

The party’s second government budget focused on plenty of spending, business advocates say

Man injured in police shooting near Nelson has died: B.C. police watchdog

The death follows an incident in Bonnington on Feb. 13

Experts urge caution after 10 human-triggered avalanches across B.C.

One man is still stuck after avalanche on south coast

Most Read